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Number 5 for 2023: The Strange Case Of Senator Jacinta Nampijinpa Price

Today we begin the countdown to our Top 5 most viewed articles in 2023. Number 5 goes to Rossleigh for this piece from October:

The Strange Case Of Senator Jacinta Nampijinpa Price

Politics is a strange game…

Now, I realise a lot of people are going to tell me that it’s not a game and that political decisions have real and profound impacts on people and calling it a game is offensive… which is why I added the word strange.

I don’t want to use the words “Canberra bubble” because it suggests that it’s confined to one city and that it could be popped at any time by a simple prick. And if that last point were true then it would have been popped a long time ago, even before Scott Morrison became PM.

Part of the trouble is that people who focus on politics all the time start to resemble elite sports people and commentators where they forget that what they’re doing is only a game and that most people have more important things to do, even if they do check the results from time to time. While the player who missed that simple shot may feel a whole range of emotions and the people who analyse his miss may wonder about his fitness as a human being, most people – apart from the diehard fans – will shrug and say, “Well it’s not like he killed someone.” In fact, if he had killed someone the commentary around it may be less critical and certainly less sustained.

So when it comes to politics, there’s a tendency from some to burrow down and look deeply into various moments, completely overlooking the fact that the electorate is made up of millions of people who all have different reasons for why they voted the way they did… even when they vote for the same party. For example, I’ve often made the point that the infamous handshake where Mark Latham aggressively shook John Howard’s hand was explained by many as the moment that lost Labor the election. It makes for a convenient narrative, but it would also have worked as a narrative that this was the moment when the young bull shows that he has more strength than the old bull who is past his used by date. The only trouble with that is that Latham lost and Howard won. Has anyone ever heard anyone say that they were going to vote for Labor until that moment but that the handshake changed their mind?

And so, this week after the Voice Referendum we return to politics because the Voice shouldn’t have been about politics but apparently Labor made it about politics because they didn’t get a consensus from the Coalition who didn’t want them to have a successful referendum. Now, I am aware that there’s so much to unpack from what happened that I think it’ll take several pages of newsprint and lots of opinion pieces and I don’t want to say anything intelligent at this point because – in the interests of balance – if I do say anything like that, then some broadcaster will find it necessary to give someone’s nonsensical conspiracy theory equal time.

Of course, one of the criticisms made of Albanese by the Opposition is that he’s been obsessed with the Voice and done nothing about the cost-of-living pressures facing ordinary Australians… I don’t know why you have to be “ordinary” to get some attention from the Coalition. Ok, they don’t like elites if they come from the inner city but most of the time the Liberal Party are telling us that we should be “aspirational” or “successful” and if we’re not, then we should just “get a better job”, as Joe Hockey once told us.

So, it does seem strange to me that the week after the Voice was defeated that the Coalition should turn their attention to pushing for a Royal Commission and an audit of spending rather than talking about the cost-of-living issues. I mean, is this an attempt to keep the Labor government talking about Indigenous issues so that the Opposition can say that they should be talking about something else? Or is it just that they feel like there are more votes to be won from Pauline Hanson’s supporters? Or is Peter Dutton just as stupid as the person who asked if Jacinta Nampijinpa Price should run for PM?

To be clear here, I’m not suggesting that person who suggested that she run for PM is stupid because I disagree with her politics; I’m suggesting that there are several problems that are functional:

  • She’s a senator and would need to find a House of Representatives seat. (Not impossible but would take time.)
  • She’s a National Party member, so she’d have to switch to the Liberals. (Again not impossible but it would need to worked out so that the Nationals didn’t get upset.)
  • She’s a woman and she’d have problems in the Liberals with the Big Swinging Dicks club. (Although they may not be swinging as wildly now they’re in Opposition.)
  • And, of course, the obvious point that nobody “runs for PM”. They become leader of their party and – if their party gets enough House of Representative seats to form government, their party appoints the PM.

Now when it comes to her performance, we have a whole strange series of alternative facts here. While it may seem like just getting media attention is the name of the game when you’re not in power, the fact remains that Pauline has managed to get media attention since last century but she’s still a long way from forming government and some of the comments Senator Price have made don’t make your average voter think that she has a strong grip on what needs to be done. Her attacks on the AEC and her comments on how great colonisation was are the sort of things that make the daily news, but they don’t make most people immediately go: “Wow, there’s a future leader!” And it begs the question, “What’s wrong with the current Liberal talent that you have to go outside the party and outside the House of Reps to find a worthy candidate?”

So in answer to the question that a newspaper recently asked, “Should Jacinta Nampijinpa Price run for PM?”, I’d merely say: I don’t know, so I’ll say no.

 

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24 comments

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  1. New England Cocky

    I am amazed that Rossleigh only ranks Number 5 in the list. Perhaps it was the content of the article that restricted his popularity?
    .
    As for Coconut Price ….. she appears to have gone walkabout since the unfortunate loss of the Referendum.
    .
    So Rossleigh, in my unofficial position of pro bono, casual, irregular part-time, self-appointed editor ….. I agree with you avoiding the term ”Canberra bubble” because there are certainly too many pricks in Canberra wanting to burst the bubble for personal pecuniary interests at the expense of Australian taxpayers.
    .
    Certainly COALition politicians are treated by Murdoch Media Monopoly as equal to elite sports athletes, without any need to do years of training for the position. Indeed, knowledge and skills are less important than malleability by the unelected political hacks who control pre-selection & promotions within that party. So ”missing the shot” is a standard response to any emergency like bushfires and flooding, where compassion and understanding are what most Australian voters want at that time.
    .
    Ahhh … the troubled Mark Latham; he of Labor inclination and One Notion membership. There is little doubt that in retrospect the all bull Little Johnnie Howard was already past his use-by date, having failed in three previous attempts to become LIARBRAL$ leader, and staying as Prim Monster for far too long as an exercise in personal aggrandisement pursuing the imperialist interests of foreign powers at enormous expense to Australian infrastructure project financing.
    .
    Again, the contorted strategy of Boofhead Duddo defies commonsense logic, and long may Australian voters recognise this wonderful attempt to be totally irrelevant.
    .
    Fortunately you have identified the key defences that protect Australian voters from Price as PM. These probably also apply to fellow Coconut Warren Mundine.
    .
    Certainly Price making complimentary comments on the European invasion of Australia and the ”benefits of colonisation” correctly lead thinking Australian voters to question the intentions of the secretive IPA financial benefactors and respond ”I don’t know, so I’ll say NO”.

  2. Terence Mills

    I too have noticed that the lead campaigners for the NO case (Price and Mundine) have gone very quiet since achieving their objective.

    They won’t even front the media to explain what exactly they do want on behalf of First Nations People or maybe that was it – just one trick ponies.

  3. leefe

    The only comments I’ve seen from Price since the referendum have been about scuttling any move to Treaty or Makaratta, and telling the governments they need to focus on “practical” matters to deal with “material” inequality.

  4. Phil Pryor

    States, and even federal governments, from now, can still do anything essential that was implied in the recently lost referendum, for, legislation on all relevant topics as they arise may be addressed. But conservative filthy irritation and keenness to profiteer in future dealings, especially in mining, leases, degradation of the environment and continual neglectful abuse are always there from big, imperious corporate miners, the deadly donors to conservative groups, parties, individuals. Soulless shit. Price and Mundine, in particular, have been prepared, devoured, used, abused, shat and flushed.

  5. Roswell

    NEC, I helped put the Top 5 together. I’m fairly sure that Rossleigh makes another appearance. 😉

  6. Bob

    NEC and Terence, not quite true, Jacinta gave a speech 06 Dec 2023, see her website: jacintaprice.com/news
    I don’t agree with all she says, but so what, she is streets and streets ahead of most other politicians.

  7. GL

    NEC, Poider and Annabelle have finished using her to help wreck the referendum and thrown her back in the bottom drawer of the Out of Sight Out of Mind Liberal Party Filing Cabinet.

  8. Roswell

    She gave a speech!

    Well that’s it then. Her work here is now done.

  9. Bob

    GL, that’s probably correct. Roswell, she does lots of work in communities, her speeches are a reflection of that.

  10. Max Gross

    Is Peter Dutton just as stupid as the person who asked if Jacinta Nampijinpa Price should run for PM? Not just as but more so.

  11. David Stakes

    Some links missing off this page, Cannot read the piece unless you go to comments first. And no links to any social media pages. Just little things.

  12. Terence Mills

    Bob

    You are correct, Price did make a very brief speech in the Senate on 6 December calling for a Royal Commission into sexual abuse in Indigenous communities. She also demanded that there be an audit of spending on Indigenous programs – this already exists.

    https://www.jacintaprice.com/statements_by_senators_real_solutions

    What I was getting at was her low media profile and the fact that she had rejected 52 interview requests from the ABC during and after the Voice to Parliament referendum campaign, which made it very difficult to provide balance when she kept ducking for cover.

  13. Clakka

    @Bob,

    JNP learned and rehearsed all her rhetoric from her parents over many years. Like mundane Mundine, her father seeks to secure the ongoing benefaction of corporate exploiters with eyes on indigenous territories. Something JNP appears happy to facilitate.

    Rather than believe the claptrap, have a good look at what JNP and her mother have actually voted for / achieved as alleged representatives of ordinary folk – sfa.

    And whilst you’re at it, have a dig into what the black communities, particularly the Arrernte in Mparntwe, and others in their respective territories really think of them. It’s not that hard to find.

    Dutts and the LNP have undoubtedly already decided they’re best to do their own dirty work for the time being. They can do without the bumbling blabbering expedient Mundine, and will only wheel out JNP if they need her to take a fall for them.

    Interesting that you find JNP “streets and streets ahead of most other politicians”. What – just like any good bounty hunter?

  14. frances

    I so enjoy Rossleigh and how he flips things over for closer inspection to reveal the absurdities.

    Combing the streets of Wagga for a quiet morning’s respite we stumbled across The Curious Rabbit, purveyor of secondhand books, pictures, and very good coffee.

    There amongst the scattered gems in its tiny gallery was a framed poster of the ‘Uluru Statement from the Heart’, whose eloquence and grace (surrounded by all those hopeful and trusting signatures) gave me a good whack of the old grief.

    Probably just a bit thin-skinned after some lovely xmas chaos courtesy the wild and innocent offspring of farming in-laws, one of whom, recently radicalised, had been reading ‘Killing for Country’ and was passing it on during one of the adult downtimes (the farmer not the kid).

    But don’t knock the Conservatorium or the Wagga Wagga Gun Club.

    Some things are either too much too soon, or too little too late.

  15. wam

    It is not unusual, when talking to clp people, to detect the triple crown of racism, sexism and homophobia.
    Yet this white, well off, mob gave their ONLY seat to Price. Thereby gifting her a federal senate seat for 3 years.
    We have 4 federal pollies, a man and 3 Aboriginal women. Great stats????
    But, to my bias, she is a poor representative. A view not shared by the media.

  16. Bob

    Terence, I watched how the Fortress ABC leftist-leaning journos treated anyone not backing the Yes campaign in 2023. Maybe Jacinta has some pride in not associating herself with those who tried to browbeat all the public into submitting to their funder’s ideal. I can see straight through the ABC and what they are up to. The place needs a clean sweep.
    Clakka, true, there’s a range of views in the Aboriginal communities, JNP gives voice to some.
    Politics is as coherent as the main message(s) delivered by lobbyists & msm to politicians, most of whom behave like beggars with one eye on their next posting. There are a few good ones swimming against the tide of think-tank generated misinfo & disinfo and against the machinery of big business with their sleights of hand and legal trickery.
    Rhetoric question: Why isn’t Team Albo flagging the idea that his govt will redirect the promised $350B in tax cuts next year to fix up problems in Aboriginal communities and broader community in general? That’d sit better with most voters.

  17. Terence Mills

    Bob

    I hear what you say but, by rejecting ABC interviews, Price aligned herself and became the darling of Sky after Dark and in my view that medium is the refuge of scoundrels and peddlers of fake news and misinformation ; not a good look for somebody trying to present herself as credible representative of first nations people.

  18. leefe

    Bob,

    If you can look at the ABC as it is in 2023 and see “Fortress ABC leftist-leaning journos” I would suggest you remove those tinted glasses and have your eyes checked properly.
    The ABC has b een white-anted into submission and is now just another neoliberalist echo chamber.

  19. Bob

    Terence, the chances of me seeing JNP on Sky is slim to zero, hasn’t happened yet, will buy a Lotto ticket if I do.
    What little of Sky I’ve seen looks like controlled opposition with input at times from independents such as Rowan Deane.

    leefe, your comment reminds me of a doco I watched where a hypnotist cast his spell on 2 audience members. The hypno-victims were told debate each other, one was told to sing the praises of The Simpsons and the other told to absolutely slam the show as pile of junk. It was one of the funniest interchanges of opinion I’ve seen on tv.

    How did we get here, asking for a friend?

  20. frances

    How did you get here Bob?
    Asking for a friend.

  21. Canguro

    re. NEC’s comment on ‘Jacinta Price making complimentary comments on the European invasion of Australia and the benefits of colonisation‘, not that we’ll ever know now that the debacle of the referendum with the misinformation campaign swirlings that sunk it, but it would have been useful if she’d been asked if she’d viewed the SBS documentary, The Australian Wars.

    I did, and found it to be a profound unwrapping of the consequences of the early years of colonialism, and wrt Jacinta Price, how anyone could defend the actions of white people as being ‘beneficial’ for Aboriginals is beyond comprehension, whether what happened then or is still extant to this day with the appalling conditions of inland indigenous communities – out of sight and out of mind, as John Pilger’s 2013 film Utopia demonstrated.

    On a slight detour, per comments, I’m currently in Tasmania on a quick cook’s tour and yesterday drove down a road south of Campbell Town in the middle of the island towards the eastern side. I knew I was in a region where there had been fierce battles between indigenous people and the whites determined to be rid of them. This road I drove down turned out to finish at the entrance to what was clearly a large pastoral estate; a large sign announced that the road was now private and vehicles were prohibited to proceed any further; the entrance to the homestead was grand, the gardens visible inside were also magnificent, and the vintage house similarly announced wealth and prestige.

    My partner got out of the car to take some photos, dogs barked from within, and moments later a car came roaring out from inside the estate, and from the car alighted an elderly lady, indignant, angry, dismissive, full of ‘get off my property’ language, threatening to call the police, telling us how influential she was, that she was an employer of seven men, that we had no right to be in her vicinity and so on. Wow! Welcome to Tasmania. I wondered, naturally, whether her forebears were instrumental in the slaughter of local indigenous inhabitants in their quest for control of thousands of acres.

  22. Bob

    frances, inter-web of course: I’m a modern man, in an ancient plan, unfolding as it does, let us be nonplussed.

  23. leefe

    Canguro:

    Welcome to Tasmania, the blindest of the blind when it comes to colonial history.
    I thiink I know the road you mean. There is a route past that property but you have to know the turnoff and the road gets rather rough in places.

    Have a good time while you’re here. It’s still beautiful in places.

  24. Canguro

    Thank you leefe. The last two days in Hobart have been delightful, including as they have a trip out to the Huon Valley with lunch at the Ranelagh bakery, and two visits to Constitution Dock to eyeball the yacht-fest.

    The first day’s travel east from Ulverstone across to the upper Tamar Valley to spend time with a lavender grower with whom we’d had earlier contact was also a delight, as were vineyard visits.

    Heading over to Strahan today, then back to Sydney tomorrow.

    I agree with your comment; it’s a beautiful place. I hope what’s still left of natural beauty can be kept intact and valued for what it is.

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